01 May The Fun Of Missing Out ~ Redefining FOMO
Please join me in a meditation of blissful ignorance. For the next 30 days take the first hour of your morning and avoid all forms of electronic media. From the moment you wake up spend 60 conscious minutes doing anything else. Don’t turn on the radio or the TV. Don’t check your email. Don’t browse the Internet. Don’t update your Facebook status or peruse others’. No Instagram. No Twitter. No Snapchat, if that’s still a thing. Instead, devote your intentions to having a wonderful day.
Wash your face. Brush your teeth. Make your bed. In silence of your thoughts, relax your mind without the distractions of the frantic world around you. Get some exercise. Before you release the floodgates of news and information, roll out your mat and practice 30 minutes of yoga. Go for a walk or even a run. Make breakfast. Have a cup of coffee or tea and just sit in the comfort of your own pleasant company. Give thanks to all that you are grateful for. Sit and be still secure in the knowledge that whatever you’re afraid of missing will be there when you’re good and ready because you’re worth the wait.
This idea was prompted after a week of fretting over the circumstances of modern times. On deadline for a complicated magazine article I woke up each morning to agonize over the pain and suffering of countless people around the world, which only added to my own. School shootings, church bombings, natural disasters and terrorist threats fill my mind with horrible thoughts of dread, coupled with impotent rage. Flooded with negative emotions and stress hormones I began each day with feelings of anger, regret, unbearable loss, but mostly fear. I experienced a genuine fear of missing out on the latest online outrage and to be left out of the great global dialog of opinion and pontification over the Internet. I was afraid that my ignorance of current events might leave me vulnerable to misinformation or ill-equipped to hold my own in a spirited debate.
But lately I have come to realize that without moments of quiet reflection and clarity of thought in silence, we are subjected to a constant barrage of stimulation, an endless stream of raw and unrefined information. Our fear of missing out puts us in a defensive state of mind where our best response to even the simplest question is a primitive binary choice of either flight or fight. Personally I’d prefer to approach any set of circumstances with more options. With a calm rational mind we can better engage the world with intelligence, compassion, kindness and perhaps even love.
I think if we can begin each morning free of the electronic noise of cyberspace and a 24-hour news cycle we can start the day under our own terms. The fun of missing out on the things that happened while you were sleeping is you can reset your intentions with a fresh beginning, detached and unburdened by all the many things over which you have no control. You can come to grips with the complex emotions of the past and make plans for a brighter future. You don’t need to take a picture. You don’t have post a comment. Just shut out the noise and live your best life offline. And after your hour of silence is up you can face the world better prepared to be the change you want to see. The light within me honors and celebrates the light with you. Namaste